Recounting Blessings - My Mother’s Heritage
father, James Nicoll Kerr Henderson of Stirling, was attending
Glasgow University between 1925 and 1928, so my mother Agnes (Nancy)
Telfer, then unknown to him as a potential future husband, was a
student teacher at Jordanhill Training College, also in Glasgow.
Nancy Telfer in 1928
Nancy, born in 1905, was the second child of John WALKER Telfer
(1859 - 1931) and his first cousin Elizabeth (Lizzie) Waddell Walker
(1877 – 1963) who had married in Falkirk in 1902.
Telfer and Lizzie Walker
Nancy’s mother Lizzie, before her marriage, had been employed as a
Dressmaker, and her father was a Foundry Cashier - the foundry
career for him having been promoted by his father, Falkirk’s
Castlelaurie Foundry Manager, John Telfer (1835 – 1915).
pattern of Telfer family events up to Nancy’s birth in 1905 is
fairly well summarised in the second and third images (below) of an
article about Nancy’s grandfather which was published in 1908 in the
Falkirk Herald, and which also refers to Nancy’s great grandfather
William Telfer (first image).
William Telfer (1811- 1896)
Jean (Rennie) Telfer (1807 -1876)
John Telfer (1835- 1915)
attended Falkirk High School, and although this schooling was
interrupted by a severe bout of rheumatic fever, she eventually
became an outstanding student, particularly in Music, Art and
Mathematics. Thereafter at Jordanhill Teacher Training College she
graduated with merit, and with a teaching grade of ‘Very Promising’.
Regrettably, as I never really talked much with my mother about her
youth, all that I can now gather about her early days has to be
interpolated from the many photographs taken for the family albums
by her brothers, John (1903 – 1973) and Willie (1907 – 1993). Thus I
present just a few of these below, with as much identification as I
know that it was a happy, loving, and very musical upbringing that
she experienced, and that marvellous summer holidays in Crail, Fife,
for almost two decades with various members of the extended family
of Walkers, WALKERS, Thomsons, and Shorts et al., contributed
greatly to everyone’s enjoyment of life and to the families’
The Telfer Children in 1915
Nancy, Willie, Jenny and John
next picture shows,
left to right in the back row:
Cousin John Short, Nancy Telfer, AN Other, Grace Temple (Nancy’s
Bridesmaid to be) and Willie Telfer.
left to right in the front row:
Minnie Robertson (Willie’s future wife), Cousin Agnes Short, and
James Nicoll Kerr Henderson
Agnes (Nancy) Telfer